DUBAL Disqualification

Florida Statute § 322.64(1)(a) stipulates that a law enforcement officer can disqualify from operating any commercial motor vehicle any person who, while operating or in actual physical control of a commercial motor vehicle, is arrested for a violation of Florida Statute § 316.193 relating to unlawful blood or breath alcohol level (commonly referred to as a DUBAL offense), or any person who refuses to submit to a breath, urine, or blood test.

People can have their commercial driver’s licenses (CDLs) suspended even when they are arrested for operating traditional passenger vehicles. A CDL suspension is particularly damaging for commercial truck drivers because any time without a license is time that the driver is unable to work and earn a living.

Lawyer for DUBAL Disqualification Defense in Fort Lauderdale, FL

Was your CDL disqualified because of a DUI arrest or refusal to submit to testing in Palm Beach County? You will want to contact Meltzer & Bell, P.A. as soon as possible.

Our criminal defense attorneys in Fort Lauderdale aggressively defend clients in communities all over Broward County, Miami-Dade County, and Palm Beach County. Call (561) 557-8686 right now to have our lawyers review your case and discuss all of your legal options during a free, confidential consultation.


Overview of DUBAL Disqualification in Palm Beach County


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DUBAL Disqualification Process in Florida

A driver has only 10 days to request a formal or informal review of the disqualification by the Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles. A driver can submit to the Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles any materials relevant to the disqualification.

Under Florida Statute § 322.64(2)(a), the law enforcement officer will forward the following to the Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles within 5 days after the date of the issuance of the notice of disqualification:

  • a copy of the notice of disqualification, the driver license of the person disqualified, and an affidavit stating the officer’s grounds for belief that the person disqualified was operating or in actual physical control of a commercial motor vehicle, or holds a commercial driver license, and had an unlawful blood-alcohol or breath-alcohol level;
  • the results of any breath or blood or urine test or an affidavit stating that a breath, blood, or urine test was requested by a law enforcement officer or correctional officer and that the person arrested refused to submit; and
  • a copy of the notice of disqualification issued to the person; and the officer’s description of the person’s field sobriety test, if any.

The officer can also submit a copy of a video recording of the field sobriety test or the attempt to administer such test and a copy of the crash report.


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Formal vs. Informal Hearings for DUBAL Disqualification in Florida

A driver has the right to select a formal review or an informal review of the CDL disqualification. A formal review will involve the driver and the arresting officer actually appearing before the hearing officer (as well as any witnesses), while an informal review is conducted by a hearing officer without the driver, officer, or any witnesses being present.

Florida Statute § 322.64(7) establishes that in a formal or informal review, the hearing officer will determine by a preponderance of the evidence (meaning the greater weight of the evidence) whether sufficient cause exists to sustain, amend, or invalidate the CDL disqualification. The scope of the review is limited to the following issues when the driver was disqualified for a DUBAL offense:

  • Whether the law enforcement officer had probable cause to believe that the person was driving or in actual physical control of a commercial motor vehicle, or any motor vehicle if the driver holds a commercial driver license, in this state while he or she had any alcohol, chemical substances, or controlled substances in his or her body; and
  • Whether the person had an unlawful blood-alcohol level or breath-alcohol level of 0.08 or higher.

If the person was disqualified from operating a commercial motor vehicle for refusal to submit to a breath, blood, or urine test, then the scope of the review is limited to the following issues:

  • Whether the law enforcement officer had probable cause to believe that the person was driving or in actual physical control of a commercial motor vehicle, or any motor vehicle if the driver holds a commercial driver license, in this state while he or she had any alcohol, chemical substances, or controlled substances in his or her body;
  • Whether the person refused to submit to the test after being requested to do so by a law enforcement officer or correctional officer; and
  • Whether the person was told that if he or she refused to submit to such test he or she would be disqualified from operating a commercial motor vehicle for a period of 1 year or, if previously disqualified under this section, permanently.

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Palm Beach County DUBAL Disqualification Resources

Florida CDL Handbook | Florida Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles — View the full text of the Florida Commercial Driver License Handbook. The handbook not only covers CDL tests, but also CDL disqualifications. You can also read about other CDL rules.

Florida Statute § 322.64 — View the full text of the state law governing CDL disqualifications. Learn what happens when the Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles fails to schedule the formal review hearing within 30 days after receipt of the request therefor. You can also find information about obtaining a license for business or employment purposes.


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Find a DUBAL Disqualification Defense Attorney in Fort Lauderdale

If your CDL has been disqualified because of a DUI arrest or test refusal in South Florida, it is in your best interest to quickly seek legal representation. Meltzer & Bell, P.A. represents individuals in Palm Beach Gardens, Riviera Beach, Royal Palm Beach, Wellington, West Palm Beach, Boca Raton, Boynton Beach, Delray Beach, Greenacres, Jupiter, Lake Worth, and several other nearby areas in the Palm Beach County area.

Our Fort Lauderdale criminal defense lawyers can fight to help you regain your driving privileges. You can have our attorneys provide a complete evaluation of your case when you call (561) 557-8686 or fill out an online contact form to set up a free initial consultation.


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